Cherry Blossoms in Washington D.C.

Welcome Back, travellers! In my last introduction blog, I mentioned that most likely three things will resonate with you when you travel: people, architecture, and history. Well, a visitor from my travels made it to Washington D.C. all the way from from Shanghai, China to see the infamous cherry blossom festival in April. My friend Jiaqi Chen went to the University of Newcastle with me in Australia, and it has been 2 years since we had seen each other. With Jiaqi being so close, it meant I was going to Washington D.C. to rekindle our friendship and drive up to the capitol to see the cherry blossoms!

Washington D.C. has a million and one places for everyone to see from the White House, to the National Mall, to the monuments, and more! I have now been to D.C. easily 5-6 times now, and I still haven’t even scratched the surface of what the city has to offer. My past two trips there have been filled with wonder, excitement, and something different every time! Where will you go and what will you see the next time you go? 

Back in April, I made a trip up to Washington D.C. to visit my cousin and go to the Cherry Blossom Festival. It was beyond worth it to see the pink blossoms and the creativity of the cherry-inspired festival! For those looking to see the blossoms, my first suggestion is to go the first week or weekend of the festival as the blossoms are at their peak then; the blossoms fall quite a bit by the end of the second week. The city is covered in themed Cherry Blossom foods, drinks, apparel, etc. My favorite part of my trip was eating at Ted’s Bulletin (8th Street near Capitol Hill) - this restaurant makes homemade pop-tarts including a Cherry Blossom option stuffed with cherry filling topped with cherry frosting and candied cherry blossoms! YUM! 

After your appetite is satisfied, by sure to make the trip down to the festival and walk along the Potomac River. Take your time, admire the beautiful trees, watch the Japanese dancers, and soak in all of the beauty. If you were as thirsty as I was after this beautiful walk, you can head up to Tonic at Quiqley’s for a Cherry Blossom themed cocktail. Everywhere you look, the city embraces this festival. 

If you are interested in attending the Cherry Blossom Festival in 2020, mark your calendars for March 20- April 12. Do your research and find all the places embracing the exchange of 3,000 Japanese Cherry Blossom Trees!

Washington D.C. area has something for everyone, anything from festivals celebrating international culture to a good ole fashion American Baseball game! My boyfriend Paul wanted to show us a bit of his world as a baseball player, and that meant Jiaqi and I were off to a Baltimore Orioles and Cleveland Indians game. Neither of us had ever been to a professional baseball game or Baltimore, and, to be honest, I most definitely will have to go back and explore Baltimore on another trip! The game was so much fun and worth the hour to an hour and half a trip from D.C.! I long doubted the excitement and fun of a baseball game, but I quickly learned that you “don’t knock it till you try it!” Grab your peanuts, hotdogs, ice cold beer, and cracker jacks and get ready for the Great American Past-time, and don’t forget to sing loud and proud in that 7th inning stretch!

Travelling is so much fun when you know your history and love who you are with! On Sunday, Paul and I grabbed some Bird Scooters (accessible through their app) and started our awesome tour of Washington D.C. lead by Muah tours! We began at the National Mall and travelled to the Washington monument, the White House, made our way all the way to the Lincoln Memorial, and then finished at the Virginia Air and Space museum. It struck me on our tour when Paul told me that he had only ever seen the memorials in textbooks. How many places have you read about and never visited that were closer than you thought? Seeing the pages of a book come to life makes you see the world differently. The words you read describing what you saw seem trivial after being there and witnessing their true wonder. After walking down the Vietnam memorial, standing in front of the soldiers fighting in Korea, staring at thousands of shoes from victims of the Holocaust, you start to feel the weight of history. There is a sadness for the loved lost, a sense of terror for what people suffered, and a sense of power for the knowledge to keep learning. That is the true power of travel.

If you live near me in Williamsburg, Washington D.C. is only a 2-hour trip if the traffic is generous, but it’s best to allot 3 hours. Whether it’s a day trip or a week-long trip, take a trip up to D.C. The Smithsonian museums are free, the National Zoo is free, to walk the monuments is free. There won’t be many trips or places I will be able to write to you about where a majority of the things to do are so budget-friendly! If you are looking for something to do one weekend, rent a scooter, rent a bike, or just walk to see what you find! Explore! That is how you find some of the coolest memories of your travels. 

This magic of this trip was all of the things you see and feel when you travel. Being with Paul and Jiaqi while exploring and educating each other about baseball and history made this trip... the people you meet. Seeing the look on Paul’s face when he saw the monuments and watched the pages of a book become real was joyous… the architecture. Finally walking through the Air and Space museum looking at the first airplane to take flight and walking through the Holocaust museum and seeing thousands of shoes from victims or trying to figure out how 200 people fit in a railcar was mind boggling… the history. A trip anywhere close or far will be what you make of it, try to find your adventure and make it your own. 

Your stories from Washington D.C. and a baseball game will never be the same as mine, but if you have suggestions for places to eat, visit, or things to do let us know! Our team is always looking for there next adventure! 

Sarah-Daye HandComment